Monday, September 03, 2007

Four Quick Hits

Municipal, provincial, federal, and American political links on this Labour Day Monday.


Municipal: The Alnoor Kassam campaign will be running the first batch of radio ads this week, on traffic. They're kind of cute, so feel free to give them a listen here.


Provincial: Apparently Ed Stelmach is getting the always unpleasant Mr. Dithers label, according to the Globe. As much as I'm not a fan of Stelmach, I've actually never heard him called Mr. Dithers. I've heard "Unsteady Eddie", "Mr. Ed", "Special Ed", "Harry Strom Jr." and about 50 other insults, but never Dithers. The article also has this inspirational quote:

“Will there be people without homes? Yes. Will there be some sick people that we can't save, despite all the medical technology that we have? Yes, there will be. But people are continuing to move here because where else are they going to go in Canada?

I think we may have a new slogan to replace wild rose province. "Alberta: Where else are you gonna go?"


Federal: The Tories continue to try and neutralize the Afghanistan issue.


US: Lots of Republicans seem to get themselves into sex scandals. And, for whatever reason, a large percentage of them seem to be gay sex scandals.

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13 Comments:

  • I think they retired "Mr. Dithers" when Martin stepped down. No one else will wear that for a while yet.

    By Blogger saphorr, at 2:09 AM  

  • I don't get it - first Craig Chandler tells non-Tories to leave, and now Stelmach is asking where else could we go?

    Talk about flip-flopping indeed!

    By Blogger Glen, at 2:20 AM  

  • I prefer "Sick to the Stelmach" or "Stelmach Ache".

    By Blogger Robert Vollman, at 10:08 AM  

  • Someone at the Sun coined "Premier Rain Man," and that's what I've been using ever since.

    By Blogger Ravuya, at 11:02 AM  

  • I just read that exact same Stelmach article and was really caught off guard by his comments. This guy is Premier of Alberta...?! With a heavy heart and deep sigh, I resign myself, once again, to grappling with the fact that Canada is run by mediocre half-weights who couldn't make Chief of Staff in other countries. Why is Canada such a magnet for mediocrity? Whether it's politics or Ginger Snaps, I grow more and more frustrated each day.

    Perhaps I shouldn't be so gloomy - maybe it's just my mood today.

    But yeah, nice slogan suggestion. The provincial Liberals could really make some use of that...

    By Blogger Jason Bo Green, at 4:09 PM  

  • jason; You've been reading too much Andrew Coyne lately...

    In fairness, there aren't exactly a ton of inspiring politicians around these days. Even the "succesful" ones like Harper and McGuinty aren't exactly setting the world on fire.

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 7:05 PM  

  • to be honest, if Stephane Dion gets the shot to be PM with a strong mandate during good economic times, he'd probably set the world on fire. He's got a maverick streak.

    By Blogger petroom, at 8:06 PM  

  • How does a mayor plan to get tough on drugs and crime - shouldn't he be aware they do not fall within municipal jurisdiction?

    By Blogger Gayle, at 8:08 PM  

  • Actually, I did read that article this weekend - but I've thought our politicians were mediocre for a long time now. And it was interesting how Coyne mentioned British Parliament - each time I (rarely) watch it, I'm always left feeling wistful and cheated. The House of Commons is a joke, and anyone who wants to know why low numbers of people vote has to start by looking there. We go on and on about "apathy", but I think most non-voters are just tired of being left uninspired. God knows I got no one to vote for in the Ontario election. I'm interested in politics and government, but I really don't want any of the above. Meh, I'll probably vote Green as a "protest" vote or whatever, but - what kind of way is that to vote???

    By Blogger Jason Bo Green, at 8:32 PM  

  • There is a reason - and it is a damn good one - that we are governed by boring and uninspiring people. We have a parliamentary system, and a leadership selection where leaders are selected by a narrower base of party members (that is, we have a more elite selection system than US primaries).

    In order to be Prime Minister you have to slog through the ranks and be a good (and loyal) cabinet minister that doesn't rock the boat very much. This does not necessarily hold for opposition leaders, who often can be outsiders to Ottawa since the things that allow you to survive in opposition (generally being petulant) are different from those that work in government.

    I think we are blessed, however, to be governed by uninspiring middle-of-the-road folks like King, Pearson, Chretien (who was not conventionally charismatic), Bill Davis and so on.

    Given the immense power of the PMO, it would be dangerous to have a dynamo at the helm. In the US, at least, the president has virtually no power - except for the fact that the cameras are on him all of the time, and he may parlay this into getting congress to do his bidding (if he is popular - as Bush post 2004 demonstrates, unpopular presidents have no superpowers).

    petroom: lay off the shrooms. I could see Dion being competent (though as opposition leader he has been even more negative than Harper was, just as petulant, and my god the hyperbole), but not inspiring. Its not so much his accent as his droning voice and completely unemotional face (and ridiculous appearance) that do him in. Or for a more dramatic illustration, imagine any Winston Churchill speech delivered by Dion.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 11:32 PM  

  • gayle; You can hire more police officers and give them direction (ie. Bronco's been telling them to crack down more lately).

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 1:30 PM  

  • "The good news? I got on the train. The bad news? I was next to this smelly guy."

    So... Alnoor will create an elite team of Smell Police to throw anyone who fails the Smell Test off the train?

    "They call Deerfoot a freeway, but it seems more like a parkway to me."

    park·way –noun
    a broad thoroughfare with a dividing strip or side strips planted with grass, trees, etc.

    Seriously, though, I like a fair bit of the platform on his website. I'll consider voting for him.

    (As a side note, when those "Go West LRT" signs started popping up a few months ago, I assumed they were a Bronco campaign attacking Stelmach.)

    By Blogger The Invisible Hand, at 10:42 PM  

  • Gayle: "How does a mayor plan to get tough on drugs and crime"

    The idea is that he's going to get tough while doing drugs and crime. You misunderstood.

    By Blogger Crabgräss, at 10:45 PM  

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